In the latter days of Entharion the Wise, before even the rise of the Great Underground Empire of which the Land of Frobozz was once a part
, some unknown practitioner or group of practitioners somehow accidentally awakened a shapeless and formless manifestation of evil from millennia of sleep. This incredibly ancient and malevolent force, exuding pure evil, came to be known as the Great Terror, or the Unseen Terror.

The Terror feasted on fear, drinking it up like a sponge; and when full, gave it back again. To satisfy its urging appetite, the evil entity itself radiated fear like the sun radiated heat and light, forcing all it permeated to fear it, seeping into their minds like cold fog. Thus the unending cycle bolstered the Terror with incredible power.

Those nearby described it as an evil presence, borne on a cold blast of air, weighing them down with emanations of malice and hatred. It voice was like an icy, chilling wind. Although this demon was usually invisible, the Unseen Terror was able to vaguely don other images. "A faint blue luminescence formed far ahead. In the heart of that glow a figure took form, coalescing from veins of darkness that ruptured and spilled their liquid evil to feed the growing shape. The faceless silhouette."

The power of the Great Terror was magical in nature, and magicians and all things magical were more sensitive to it—the wizards were especially the most vulnerable. The older they were, the more likely it was that they had fallen under its power. Every crack and cranny the Terror found, he was able to sink its claws into, especially envy: wishing for more money, a better position with more authority, a more beautiful companion. And the more an enchanter used his magic, the most susceptible he became to the influence of the Great Terror. As it was capable of sensing any enchanter that worked even the most minute of magic, none could draw near to it without being detected. Even the greatest enchanters and wizards of the day succumbed to its creeping fear.

Seven men, enchanters and wizards, did not wait to succumb to its horrible power, but instead sought the Terror out and gave themselves to it willingly, hoping somehow to forge an alliance with it and augment their knowledge and power for themselves. But the Terror enslaved them completely, took from them their wills and their natural human forms, and sent them out as instruments of fear. To do the Terror’s work they were able to assume whatever shape they desired, with an exception of that of men. They could never again become human. Together with its servants, the Terror nearly destroyed all civilization.

But Entharion, by then an old man, realized that the Terror could not be killed, only imprisoned. Knowing that the Terror had power to sense a great work of magic, he conceived a plan to lure the creature into a magical prison by creating the most powerful spell scroll imaginable in those days. Entharion called together the mightiest enchanters and sorcerers and wizards in the land, and together, working day and night, they created a scroll of truly great power—GUNCHO, which was able to open gateways to new worlds and dimensions beyond our own.

Working swiftly and with full urgency, they then constructed a maze-like series of chambers far beneath Largoneth Castle and placed the scroll at the very heart of it. These peculiar rooms, whose cream-colored walls were thing and translucent, were joined by passages that were perfect round and black, seeming to be made of carbon. The layout of these chambers were magically linked to a map, each room and passage distinct upon it.

This map consisted of a drawing with nine points, each represented by a strange character, with interconnecting thin pencil lines. Although the events of 956 GUE have since altered this map, researchers have assumed the following to have been the original placement of the passages:

B       J
!      / \
!     /   \
!    /     \
!   K       V
!          / \
!         /   \
!        /     \
R-------M       F
 \     /       /
  \   /       /
   \ /       /
    H       P

The GUNCHO scroll was placed in a room of living rock that formed Largoneth’s foundations (chamber P). As Entharion knew it would, the Terror came to seek the scroll containing potent magic. Lurking in the shadows of the castle, the magicians waited for their foe to enter the specially created recess deep within the earth where they had placed the scroll. Then, acting in concert with all the powers at their command, they sealed the Terror deep within the room by removing the passage between chambers P and F. There it finally returned to a deep sleep. Concurrently, the seven Servants of the Terror each returned to their own treasure filled lairs in various regions all across Zork (one of which was in uncivilized lands far north of Frobozz). Hidden there for ages, they slumbered until the days of the Terror’s release.

To that end, Entharion, at the age of 65, renounced the throne of Quendor to his son Mysterion and spent the rest of his days within the estate as guardian of the monster that slept below. The Terror was so horrible that none would dare speak of it. And after his days passed what was fact was slowly allowed to become legend and fairytale, and in time the truth of the Great Terror was forgotten for nearly a millennium, when it would be reawakened in 956 GUE.

In that year, another evil in the form of the renegade sorcerer, Krill, threatened Frobozz and took the Castle Largoneth as his seat of power. An apprentice of the Great Belboz the Necromancer, whose name is not recorded, was sent to destroy Krill. He succeeded, but in the process found the Terror's prison underneath the Largoneth dungeon and unwittingly disturbed it. This enchanter managed to break into the tomb and retrive the GUNCHO spell that had originally luried it there, while still keeping the Terror entrapped. It is known that during the final hours of the confrontation, Krill pondered the idea of using the Terror for his own purposes, but the plan came to naught.

What the enchanter did not realize was that in the process of resealing the underground passages, a crack, just small enough for the evil demon to escape had been made. The Terror gradually worked its way through the maze and escaped. It bided its time, mindful of its first defeat. It moved slowly and secretly into the southlands and settled in the swamps of Miznia, in the ruins of Dolo Finis, near the border of Orexia. There it waited and gained strength while its influence crept slowly and inexorably across the world, corrupting all it touched.

One by one, the southern provinces of Miznia and Orexia, even the greatest enchanters and wizards succumbed to a creeping fear. They crawled into their guildhalls and shuttered their windows and did nothing. The entire Guild of Enchanters in Orexia was crippled beneath his influence. Finister, one of the guild masters, escaped to Thriff before the entire region succumbed entirely to the corruption of the Great Terror. At least he claimed he escaped, he seemed to receive at least a taste of the Terror’s influence, which cursed him with random bouts of sudden sleep.

The Terror's powers slowly continued to enroach up out of the southlands and spread north even as far as Thriff. In Mareilon, his influence was very strong and had been for some time, so strong that even ordinary people with no magical sensitivities had been affected without even knowing it. They grew rude, feared strangers, and even feared each other, drawing into themselves with a suspicious anxiety so great that they dared not even tread the once friendly streets unarmed. The Terror feasted on the city’s fear. Grues, which usually did not attack in the daylight, began to first live in shadows, then dared to even venture momentarily into the daylight if order to assault a stray victim.

In the years just before the collapse of the First Age of Magic (966 GUE), the Thriff guild of enchanters summoned a boy named Anesi who lived in the wildlands to the far north of Frobozz. They believed that only one of youth would have the greatest advantage against the Great Terror, for one of that stature would still have their innocence and would not be tempted to evil like most of the others. It was during this time that the seven Servants of the Great Terror reawoke as well, one of whom Anesi and his companions slayed at the beginning of their quest, and the other six would meet their ends before it was finished.

It was not until Anesi and his companions reached the Great Underground Highway beneath Miznia that he had his first encounter with the Great Terror, who sought the young enchanter out alone and ignored the others, speaking into his mind with fear and terrible visions. To protect himself, Anesi memorized three spells for the coming confrontation, but the Terror's strategy was easy. One by one he would force Anesi to waste the spells that he had prepared.

The Great Terror greeted the party's arrival at Dolo Finis with a swarm of carnivorous spiderflowers, forcing Anesi to waste both a REZRO and RADNOG spell in the process. When they escaped into a courtyard, the Terror trapped them inside with a closed portcullis and snakes pouring from the well. This forced Anesi to waste IZYUK in order to reach the wheelhouse to reopen the portcullis.

As Anesi attempted to memorize additional spells, a savage downdraft of the remaining four Servants of the Terror, now in bird form, knocked him down.
In order to tempt Anesi, the Great Terror assumed the form his own father, Choboz. Though an illusion, Anesi believed that this was his father who had willingly bowed down to the service of the Terror in exchange for magic power. Anesi refused to serve the demon, repelling him with a concentrated FROTZ.

The Great Terror screamed with an unholy voice and flung up its arms as the entire top of the wall suddenly incandesced with a pure white radiance. Like a powerful beacen, light shot up into the night, brightening the heavens, flooding the city. The eyes of the Great Terror burned with light, and its shrieking mouth filled with light. Light exploded from its fingertips, and light burst forth from its ripping chest. It flung out its arms, and beams of light scorched the darkness. In pain—perhaps even in terror—it flung itself from the top of the wall and fell like a shooting star.

At that moment, Chuck and nearly twenty other of his dragon friends arrived to fight against the Servants of the Terror. The dragon had showed them the sapphires Anesi had given him and insisted that they meet him. One their way, they had spotted the quartet cruising the coastline of the Shallow Sea and pursued. The dragons were able to defeat the four, but the Terror, now a charred and blackened image, continued to fight on, seizing Anesi by the throat. 

The face that once was his father’s leered at him through burned and blackened lips. Half-melted flesh hung like wadded tissue on one cheekbone, where scorched teeth showed through. Only a stubble of hair remained, and the scalp had slipped to the back of the skull. A great gaping split opened from the throat to the belly, but where organs might have been there was only emptiness and a muffled rustling like the sound of the sea in a shell.

Before stabbing the Terror with a small dagger in the wrist, Anesi replied with the famous lines, “I do fear you. But it’s not fear that makes you strong, but submission to fear.” The Terror let Anesi go and the others of his party assaulted the demon as well.

Stribel Wartsworth , who had disguised himself as a dwarf-like man in order to shield himself from being detected by the Terror, reverted to his true form and unleashed the spell he had been preparing, GUNCHO. While the spell hurled the evil Krill into another world, the Terror shrugged it off like an oversized suit.

Anesi quickly memorized the YONK spell and released it upon Tyrillee. While the dryad drew near to a morgia tree, Cubby took hold of the Terror and threw it to Tyrillee. The dryad encoiled her arms around the demon and then vanished inside the tree. She reappeared alone, leaving the Terror behind inside the world within the tree. It was now trapped and had an entire world all to itself.